Do you suffer from any pre-existing conditions?
Ah, that old question on the health insurance form. The one if you answer falsely you’re fooked if they find out and you need to claim, and the one if you answer truthfully are fooked anyway because it’ll make it harder to claim.
Oh, the health form?! It seems I’m now at the age (ripe old age of 26 and 2 weeks) where I should have my own private health insurance. You know, “just in case” as my mother likes to put it. So I’ve been perusing the forms from various insurers to see who will give me the most cover for the least amount of money and that same question comes up every time. Help me out fellow AAers, do I answer the question truthfully and say “Yes” and follow it up with “Arsenal fan of 18 years” ?
And if they need to know the ailments this “pre-existing condition” threatens to bring up at any time, do I list the highs that no drug could possibly ever take you on and the lows that feel like several daggers to your heart? Do I mention the one time love you feel for a young man who is the heartbeat of your midfield and the disdain you now feel as you think he left like a coward? Or how about the possible physical danger as the nearest object goes flying across the room as the Russian doesn’t seem to want to run anymore? The possible heart attacks? The mood swings? Oh, and the very possible possibility I might not be able to meet my monthly payments, because, well, the Ryanair flights were so cheap and the ticket fairy has come good again?!
So, would just saying “NO” be easier?! A little lie?!
Like that little lie I often try and tell myself. That there is more important things in life than football, than Arsenal. And trust me, I know there are, but it bloody won’t go away. The heartbreak when cheating, diving Shrek is on the winning team again and Robin’s magic left foot isn’t enough. The prancing around for days after we beat mighty “can’t pay people to come to our games” Wigan.
What is it about football that does this to us?! A bunch of men running around after a round, synthetic object trying to put it into a net held up by two posts! It sounds so silly, but say that to my face and risk my wrath. I don’t need to tell you guys that because ye all feel the same way. But it is impossible to explain to those who don’t get it. The constant annoyance when people say it’s silly (the same people that’ll all be on the Ireland bandwagon during the Euros “for the craic*”) or when they don’t get how an Irish person can have such an allegiance to an English team. Although these same people are very nice in giving me a large berth when we lose:
“What’s with Mary? Moody all morning.”
“Arsenal lost, don’t mention it, Manchester United.”
An actual conversation between an English woman and Polish woman who wouldn’t know a football from a handbag, but the Polish woman nodded at the English woman’s explanation as if the realms of supporting a football team came second nature to her. Thinking about it, probably should have put the Arsenal fan syndrome on the job application form as well … ah well, they know now don’t they?!
So over the last few weeks, I have read and listened with anger and a little pity as “Gooners” – some of them allegedly lifelong – said they could no longer bear to watch Arsenal anymore. They’ve gone beyond caring because “Wenger is ruining the club”… HOW CAN YOU NOT CARE? What happened to the “through the good and the bad times.” And are they really bad times? I’ve been an Arsenal fan for 18 years (long time for me, short time for some of ye) and I reckon I’ve been spoiled – Premier League, FA Cups, Doubles, Unbeaten season, Henry, Bergkamp, van Persie, Wengerball, Champions League Final, new stadium – am I missing out on the bad parts? Ok, am, well, the finishing ONLY in the top four every season is pretty rough (apart from my first season when we finished 12th), and the always challenging but never actually winning a trophy for 6 years has been tough but hardly enough to warrant a mention on my health form.
It could be better, of course it could. But its not that bad. Social networks, the pubs, the Emirates, the radio phone-ins have all become a playground for Arsenal fans to fight in. What has happened to Victory Through Harmony? What happened to the “us against world” spirit we had when everyone despised us because they weren’t us? I know we all care, I bloody well do. Just a pity more places couldn’t be like this little blog – where tempers are kept in check and the direction for our club are discussed and not argued. Then again, we only fight because we care!
Bloody Arsenal – bad for heart and good for it all at once. Might just leave it off the health insurance form for now though, hope they don’t need a medical report … doctor might see that cannon tattoo I’ve plastered on my back, give the game away. Funny thing tattoos, they’re permanent – guess this condition is forever.
*craic = Irish for “fun”
Written by Irishgunner